A TEACHER whose sister died in the Lockerbie bombing has written a book about her trauma.

Catherine Swire’s memoir Flame, Ash, Feather: A Dozen Eggs from Lockerbie launches at The Poetry House in Ledbury on Saturday, April 13.

It is a mixture of poetry, prose and philosophy - a compelling memoir about the trauma of losing her sister Flora in the Lockerbie bombing.

She explores the complicated nature of loss and emotional trauma and how raising chickens helped her through her grief.

Catherine said: “My hope is that Flame, Ash, Feather helps others facing trauma and other thinkers and artists exploring the impact of sudden loss. The chickens in this book work as metaphors for terror and creation, but they are also, centrally, birds. I hope the book not only opens up thought in a difficult area (and in a culture that can often deride it) but also affirms the transformative agency of our bond with other creatures. Also, that it sometimes makes you smile.”

Publisher Dr Todd Swift, said: “Swire’s book about trauma and loss in the context of the Lockerbie tragedy is magnificently tender – poetic, playful, erudite, and informative – it seems to generate its very own literary form – all the way reminding us of the power of memoir, to testify, inspire, and comfort.”

Catherine read English at Oxford and went on to postgraduate study in Canada. Her collection of poems, Soil explores the way that trauma is translated by landscape.

The poems were featured on Radio 4’s Ramblings and at Ledbury Poetry Festival.

Catherine leads poetry workshops from Kent to the Highlands and she teaches young adults in Worcester.

Admission is free from noon to 1pm at the Poetry House in the Barrett Browning Institute.

Catherine’s father Herbert Swire, known better as Jim Swire, is a retired English doctor from Bromsgrove best known for his involvement in the aftermath of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103.
He lobbied toward a solution for the difficulties in bringing suspects in the original bombing to trial, and later advocated the retrial and release of Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the originally convicted suspect in the case.
The destruction of Pan Am Flight 103 over the Scottish town of Lockerbie in December 1988 was the largest attack on Britain since World War Two. 259 passengers and 11 townsfolk of Lockerbie were murdered.